Sleevenotes by Lloyd Bradley (author of Bass Culture, When Reggae Was King)
Studio One Roots is an important collection of some of the deepest roots music to come out of Studio One Records, Reggae's most important record label ever.
This release features many rare and classic tracks that have been unavailable for over thirty years. As Soul Jazz Records continue to delve into the largest Reggae catalogue in the world, this release is literally ram-jam packed with classics that you cannot find elsewhere. Whilst Studio One led the field in all forms of Reggae, this collection shows how the depth of its roots music outshone all others.
Due to the uniqueness of the release, Soul Jazz Records have commissioned sleeve notes to Studio One Roots by Lloyd Bradley, author of Bass Culture: When Reggae Was King. This is the third in the series of Soul Jazz Records' Studio One releases following on from Studio One Soul and Studio One Rockers.
"Having established himself as one of Jamaica's top producers the day Studio One opened its doors in the early '60s, Clement "Coxsone" Dodd was unable to maintain his status during the roots era of the subsequent decade. This can be attributed to a couple of factors. One was Dodd's apparent reluctance to record the new, overtly Rasta-inspired music. The other was an infusion of new blood into the Jamaican music business. Eager to make a name for themselves, producers like Joe Gibbs, Bunny Lee, Lee "Scratch" Perry, and Winston "Niney" Holness managed to supplant the island's "big three" (Dodd, Duke Reid, and Prince Buster) in the process, driving the music's evolution in the '70s.
There isn't a weak number across these 16 tracks, from the Gaylads' ode to "Africa" and Devon Russell's version of the heavyweight "Drum Song" rhythm, to a trio of stunning instrumentals: Jackie Mittoo and the Cyclones with nyahbinghi drummer Count Ossie on "Meditation," Lenny Hibbert's sparkling vibe work over Mittoo's "Ghetto Organ" ("More Creation"), and Sound Dimension's "Congo Rock."
The music of this compilation is of a rare, rare beauty and is essential to anyone's reggae collection." All Music